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McNair Scholar 2011Alexis N. Yeboah

Alexis N. Yeboah is a senior at the University of Minnesota, majoring in Psychology with a minor in Sociology. Her research interests include health disparities of underrepresented groups, psychological and social issues faced by recent immigrants to the United States and the intersection of cultural values and the forms of health aid accepted in different communities. Ms. Yeboah plans on getting her Masters of Public Health with a focus on global and community health and later pursuing a doctoral degree.

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My dream is to serve as spokesperson for those who suffer from poor health using my skills acquired as a psychologist and health advocate by providing them with the avenues needed to live to their full potential. Giving them, their children and communities a chance to grow and prosper as I was given.

Research project

Ethnic Identity: Narrative Differences of African Americans, Africans and Multiethnic Emerging Adults

Abstract: Much of the existing research on ethnic identity formation in emerging adults fails to adequately distinguish amongst two distinct groups; African Americans, whose ancestral heritage comes from the forced migration of people from Africa to work as slaves, and Africans, those who recently immigrated to America from continental Africa on a voluntary basis. This research study focuses on 23 emerging adults who agreed to share a narrative account of a time when they personally became aware of their ethnicity. Participants were University of Minnesota undergraduate students who were self-identified as either: (1) African, (2) Black/African American, or (3) Multiethnic. Participant’s narratives did not differ significantly based on their group membership but results were consistent with previous research on each individual groups ethnic identity processes, such as African Americans are more likely to have narratives expressing Experiences of Prejudice and African being more likely to have narratives expressing Awareness of Difference and Awareness Underrepresentation. Implications for further research on identity development is discussed. Download poster. [PDF]

Faculty profile

Dr. Moin Syed is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota since 2009. Dr. Syed attended University of California, Santa Cruz where he received his Ph. D. in Developmental Psychology. His research focuses on social and ethnic identity development in adolescence and young adulthood, educational justice for ethnic minority students and narrative psychology.  Dr. Syed has been published in a multitude of research journals and has presented his work at conferences throughout the United States and surrounding areas.  This is Dr. Syed’s first year serving as a faculty mentor for the McNair Program.